GCC/Africa: The first of a two-part Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Intelligence report, produced by Oxford Business Group (OBG) in partnership with General Motors (GM), explores the key role that electric vehicle (EV) production could play in cutting carbon emissions and creating viable sustainable mobility solutions across Africa and the Middle East.

Titled “Gearing up for the green automotive transition”, the first report focuses on the environmental component of ESG. Overseen by OBG’s ESG Intelligence division, the analysis charts the seismic shifts under way in the global automotive industry, and the implications for production and consumption in Africa and the Middle East in an easy-to-navigate and accessible format, supported by data and infographics.

The role of research and development (R&D) activities in developing the technologies and innovations required for low-carbon and zero-emission vehicles are among the other topics explored.

The ESG Intelligence report also considers the importance of ensuring EVs and automated vehicles (AVs) meet the expectations of consumers, with safety, reliability and affordability among the criteria requiring satisfaction. It also notes the importance of ensuring that related infrastructure development, such as EV charging facilities, keeps pace with vehicle production in markets across the Middle East and Africa.

In addition, subscribers will find coverage of the potential for EV and AV technologies to be integrated into the region’s smart city developments, thereby helping to reduce both emissions and traffic congestion. Here, the report includes a case study of how green automated taxis could revolutionise transport in Dubai.

The report contains in-depth coverage of GM’s sustainability journey, tracking the strides that the multinational automotive manufacturing company has made in developing and commercialising EVs and AVs. It also maps out GM’s evolving footprint across the Middle East and Africa, both of which are key destinations for the manufacturer’s green growth plans. 

The ESG analysis includes an interview with Luay Al Shurafa, GM’s President and Managing Director, Africa & Middle East in which he talks about how the company is prioritising inclusive climate solutions as it targets a zero-emissions, all-electric future.

“Our commitment to this here in the Middle East is evidenced by our target of a 95% reduction in our annual operational carbon footprint in the UAE and our plan to launch 13 EVs in the region by 2025.. In the UAE, by 2035, we will have reduced our CO₂ emissions by more than 24,000 metric tonnes, and we are planning to make all our global products and operations carbon neutral by 2040,” Al Shurafa said.

“Working with Oxford Business Group to create GM Africa and Middle East’s first-ever ESG report has been a rewarding experience and together we have created a compelling insight into the progress and potential for helping accelerate sustainability in the automotive industry in Africa and Middle East,” he added.  

Jana Treeck, OBG’s Managing Director for the Middle East, said the report pointed to a positive outlook for automotive players that were shifting the focus away from internal combustion engine vehicle sales and working towards zero-emission automotive production.

“The green transition in the automotive industry is gaining pace worldwide, bolstered by new regulations and a growing sense of urgency around emission reduction goals,” Treeck said. “With plenty more still to do, the opportunities for stakeholders to play a key part in curtailing carbon emissions across the Middle East and Africa, and make production processes more sustainable in an era of green growth, are huge.”

“Gearing up for the green automotive transition” forms part of a series of tailored studies that OBG is currently producing with its partners, including ESG Intelligence and Future Readiness reports, and other highly relevant, go-to research tools, such as sector-specific Growth and Recovery Outlook articles and interviews. The second part of this ESG Intelligence report, produced in partnership with GM, will focus on the social and governance aspects of ESG, and will be released later this year.

The ESG Report is now available to view and download at: https://oxfordbusinessgroup.com/news/report-road-zero-emission-automotive-industry-middle-east-and-africa

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About Oxford Business Group

Oxford Business Group (OBG) is a global research and advisory company with a presence in over 30 countries, spanning the Middle East, Africa, The Americas and Asia. It is recognised internationally as a distinctive and respected provider of on-the-ground intelligence on world’s fastest-growing markets, termed The Yellow Slice, in reference to OBG’s corporate colour. 

Through its range of products - Economic News and Views; OBG CEO Surveys; OBG Events and Conferences; Global Platform, which hosts exclusive video interviews; and The Report publications – as well as its Advisory division, OBG offers comprehensive and accurate analysis of macroeconomic and sector-level developments for sound investment opportunities and business decisions. 

OBG provides business intelligence to its subscribers through multiple platforms, including its direct 6 million verified subscribers, Dow Jones Factiva subscribers, the Bloomberg Professional Services subscribers, Refinitiv’s (previously Thomson Reuters) Eikon subscribers and more.

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